Former Everton and current Hull striker retires from international duty

Nikica Jelavic

Nikica Jelavic has retired from international duty with Croatia.

Since arriving in the UK Nikica Jelavic has made a name for himself as a potent goalscorer. The Croatian signed for Scottish side Rangers in 2010, scoring an impressive 36 goals in 55 appearances for the club after his £4 million move from Rapid Vienna.

That form saw Everton snap him up in 2011, where after an excellent start to his career the goals dried up and he left for Hull City last season with 21 goals in 69 appearances.

Along with this club form he has also been in the Croatian national team since 2009. He has played 36 games for his country, scoring six times - but he will not add any more to that tally.

He has retired from international duty out of the blue.

The Croatian FA announced the decision on their official Twitter site earlier in the day:

Now they have elaborated on the subject. Croatian manager Niko Kovac has explained that Jelavic announced his decision after the team arrived back in Croatia for their game with Azerbaijan on Monday - after they beat Bulgaria last night.

Kovac stated:

"I have to admit that Jelavic surprised me and I am sorry to hear about his decision.

"Of course, I will accept it, and thank him for everything he has done for Croatia. I wish him all the best in life, including his club career."

Jelavic is however stepping aside for a long list of talented young Croatians to come to the fore.

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